new beginnings

New Beginnings

January: Time for New Beginnings


The cold snap of December has given way to cool and cloudy days of early January, when the temperatures rarely descend below freezing at night. Days are a mix of rain showers and gray clouds that occasionally allow a bit of blue to peep through.

Here in BC’s Vancouver Island, new beginnings as small signs of spring are already extending above ground.

Each little new green shoot lifts my spirits and whispers of the warm days to come. Yesterday, on my way back from the compost bin, I passed by a half-barrel where I had planted all the extra tulip bulbs that I couldn’t find room for in the gardens.

One spear of green had poked its head above the brown earth, and was already standing a good two inches tall! I know my tulips are hardy, but this one peeking above the soil was a total surprise so early in the new year.

In the corner bed, under the protection of low-growing California lilacs, several of my Siberian squill have awakened, and they too are already above ground. I’m not sure if these are brave, or just fool-hardy little plants. We have experienced freezing and snow as late as March here occasionally.

new beginnings

After our two week stint of minus 15 degree temperatures in December, and unprotected by a lack of snow, I thought my previously hardy calendulas were goners, looking very bedraggled and frozen. I’ve hung onto these, and enjoyed copious blooms all fall and into early December.

So, I cut them back, removing all the stems that seemed beyond help. Today, in  mid January, one of them is bravely flowering!

Plants are amazing. They give us such joy and hope. And can be a ray of light in the dark of winter.

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